Who was the First King of Nepal?
The First King of Nepal: – Nepal, a small land locked country in south Asia between two giant states; India and China, is a unique nation with rich natural beauty, varied cultural diversity, and huge history. In the ancient times, before the Unification, this nation consisted of small principalities (Baise and Chaubise Rajyas). These small principalities had its own Kings or rulers and were not unified. It was only after the unification by King Prithvi Narayan Shan the Nation “Nepal” was formed as a country and had its own new appointed king who started ruling Nepal. The First King of Nepal was none other than King Prithvi Narayan Shah who unified the country.
Kings before the Unification of Nepal
The first documented history of Nepal starts from the Dynasty of Lichavi. The Lichavis are said to have ruled at around 250 AD. The first Lichavi Monarch was Anshvarma. Later, another monarch like Narendradeval and Jayakamadeva ruled the nation.
After the fall of Lichavis, mall dynasty started with the formation of the city of Kathmandu. Various Malla kings ruled over different states of Nepal like Jaya Prakash Malla, YakshyaMalla, Ranjit Malla and much more. It was only after the fall of Malla Dynasty, Nepal got its first King who ruled the unified nation. The stage of Shah Dynasty came right after the fall of the Malla dynasty.
‘Prithvi Narayan Shah’ The first King of Unified Nepal
The Prince of the Gorkha Kingdom, Prithvi Narayan Shah was born to Nara Bhupal Shah and Chandra Pravawati. As a child, Shah was a responsible kid and took the very keen interest in the politics and the foreign affairs of his father. Even as a child, he had a dream of winning over Nuwakot and subsequently take Kathmandu states as his father had to lose the initial battle with the MallaDyansty of Kathmandu. This made him even more responsible towards the unification process his father had started.
King of Gorkha.
At the tender of 20, Prithvi Narayan Shah sat on the throne of Gorkha Kingdom. His father’s early death in 1743 made him king of Gorkha. As he rose to power, he started building rapport with his countrymen and valued each and every people of his state. Most importantly, Shah had very distant relations with British and sealed his borders so that peace could be maintained in the whole country.
While Prithvi Narayan Shah was the king of Gorkha, Nepal was divided into several principalities named Baise and Chaubise States or rajyas. He predicted the urgent need to unify these small states for the long term survival of the country and he set himself according to his plans. His victory march started with the realization that Nepal was not strong enough to battle with the East Indian Company while it was divided itself. He intended to unify Nepal to make Nepal a unified and dignified state in the world and to make Nepal Independent.
Prithvi Narayan Shah started his victory march with the intention to conquest Nuwakot. In 1744 he became successful in taking over Nuwakot which was the key point to know about other states of Kathmandu Valley. Soon after, he got victory over other states that surrounded the Kathmandu Valley and became able to cut off all the communications between the states of Kathmandu and other outer states.
Kathmandu was the most powerful state during the victory march of King Prithvi Narayan Shah and it was not easy to conquest over the three states of Kathmandu valley, Kathmandu, Bhaktapur, and Lalitpur. In order to conquest these states, he had to take over Kirtipur at first. After the two unsuccessful attempts, he finally took over the ancient city of Kirtipur on the third attempt.Finally, on September 25, 1768, King Prithvi Narayan Shan overthrew the king of Kathmandu, King Jaya Prakash Malla and sat on the throne. He marched to Kathmandu on the day of Indra Jatra and hailed victory over Kathmandu. Jaya Prakash Malla managed to escape and took refuge in Lalitpur.
After the dramatic and successful victory over Kathmandu, Prithvi Narayan Shah took over other two powerful states, Bhaktapur and Lalitpur. In this way, Prithvi Narayan Shah became able to bring all the small principalities under one dignified and glorified nation, Nepal.
King of Unified Nepal
After the unification of all the Baise and Chaubise Rajyas, on 25th September 1768, King Prithvi Narayan Shah founded the Kingdom of Nepal. King Prithvi Narayan Shah became the First King of modern Nepal as he was the one who brought all the small principalities into one unified nation, NEPAL. He remained in power from 25th September 1768 to 11th January 1775. He died at the age of 52 and his son Pratap Singh Shah succeeded his throne.
See Also: Mithila Culture of Nepal
Major achievement during the Reign
- Without King Prithvi Narayan Shah, it was highly likely that Nepal would have been under the rule of British Empire like India.
- King had the good foreign relation policy. He made good relations with both the neighbor countries.
- Unified the nation and made a sovereign state.
- He had very well-organized diplomatic force consisting of Khas, Magars, and Brahmins whom he directed to talk with Parbat, Tanahu, Awadh and even the British East India Company in Calcutta. Jumla, this diplomatic relation helped him gain the trust of EIC and also of other states of Nepal.
- He respected and gave importance to each and every religion of Nepal.
- Ruled the country of 7 long years as the head of the S
Hence, the First King of Nepal, Prithvi Narayan Shah became very successful in uniting all the small principalities and make a country of Nepal for which he was made the King of the Unified nation. He was a nationalist and made the country prosperous, glorified and united. It was only because of him, Nepal was not ruled by any other nations as India. His legacy, principles and novel works inspire every one of the Country Nepal.